Saturday, July 15, 2017

Music and Culture: a David Brooks Satire

I wrote a post inspired by a recent column by David Brooks, but I missed out on the most stimulating paragraph:
Recently I took a friend with only a high school degree to lunch. Insensitively, I led her into a gourmet sandwich shop. Suddenly I saw her face freeze up as she was confronted with sandwiches named “Padrino” and “Pomodoro” and ingredients like soppressata, capicollo and a striata baguette. I quickly asked her if she wanted to go somewhere else and she anxiously nodded yes and we ate Mexican.
Let's move this to a concert experience, shall we?
Recently I took a friend with only a high school degree to hear a concert. Insensitively, I led her into a symphony concert hall. Suddenly I saw her face freeze up as she was confronted with compositions titled Symphonie fantastique and Variations on a Theme by Haydn with movements like allegro con brio, andante and, shudder, Nicht zu geschwind und sehr singbar vorzutragen. I quickly asked her if she wanted to go somewhere else and she anxiously nodded yes and we hustled over to a Radiohead concert.
I dunno, is that funny? Probably not as the classical music culture is no longer part of the cultural repertoire of the upper class even though knowledge of Italian cold cuts is.

9 comments:

Christine Lacroix said...

Just did the 'test' and they guessed my age to within 6 months! Check it out:

http://www.classicfm.com/lifestyle/quizzes/can-we-guess-your-age/?utm_source=facebook&utm_medium=referral&utm_campaign=playbuzz&pb_traffic_source=facebook

Missed your Friday Miscellanea.

Bryan Townsend said...

Thanks, Christine, glad to see you are still reading the blog. I'll tell ya, it ain't easy trying to get a post up when you don't have internet!

Thanks for the link! I think it will make the next Friday miscellanea.

Bryan Townsend said...

Ok, I did the test and it said I was 28 years old! I suspect it didn't work for me because, unlike quite a few people, my musical tastes have continued to change and develop as I have grown older.

Marc Puckett said...

Very clever, sure, and amusing. You should be writing for the Times instead of Anthony Tommasini.

Bryan Townsend said...

You may be right! But I don't think I will hover over the phone waiting for their call.

Marc Puckett said...

AT is in my bad books for the time being but he did feature (Friday or perhaps yesterday) a video of Lorraine Hunt Leiberson singing the aria As with rosy steps the Morn (from Handel's Theodora at Glyndebourne in 1996) that is exquisitely beautiful; I had almost to drag myself away last evening from the video (of the opera itself) to Beethoven's Missa Solemnis, the final concert of this season's Oregon Bach Festival.

Marc Puckett said...

28, also, Christine, although I when I chose Angela Gheorghiu instead of Nicola Benedetti and 'meh' instead of 'glorious!' or whatever the option was when Anja Harteros was singing a Strauss Last Song I got pegged at 54. What can this mean???

Bryan Townsend said...

Let's wait and gather some more results and then try and guess their criteria.

Steven said...

Huh, also 28, by way of: Gorgeous -> Benedetti -> Meh -> Guitar -> String quartet -> Bach -> I don't recognise... The oddest thing is that when I deliberately made more youthful choices (Stravinsky over Bach etc.), I got pegged as 54!